Public sector workforce will be "challenging" according to the Institute for Fiscal Studies, with worker numbers outside of the NHS and schools likely to fall between 30 to 40 percent in the next five years.
– Jonathan Cribb, research economist at IFS
The public sector workforce grew by over 600,000 over the 2000s. Even so the scale of the reductions expected over the next few years looks challenging.
If delivered, the 1.1 million drop in general government employment forecast by the OBR between 2010/11 and 2018/19 would be almost three times larger than the previous drop during the early 1990s.
The workforce is a useful prism through which to look at the effects of cutting total spending whilst protecting the NHS and schools budgets from cuts.